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Industry-Wide Shortage of IT Products: Monitor Display LCD Panels

The start of a new year is normally a busy time for computer manufacturers and technology companies, and 2021 has proven no different. What has proven different this year is the availability of some crucial supplies. with the COVID-19 pandemic in full swing, people have made a major shift to working at home. This shift has had a severe impact on computer and component manufacturers worldwide. The workforce has spent much of the past year buying new LCD monitors and laptops while investing in various work-from-home solutions to make it a little easier to keep things running even when they can’t make it to the office.

Outside of business concerns, the demand for leisure devices has also increased. People who cannot go out and socialize are instead purchasing gaming systems, PCs, and TVs, while parents are buying their children tablets and notebooks as entertainment. The pandemic has created an increase in demand and industry-wide shortages of both display panels and power management IC components, including phones. The shortage isn’t just due to the pandemic, of course. Many component manufacturers were already seeing an increase in demand generated by the rollout of 5G technology and the release of two new major game consoles. That the pandemic just happened to hit during a time of significant technological change simply increased existing demand that much more. This sudden demand for all of the components parts in display screens, computers, and TVs brought about a unique situation. Not only is it unnecessary for component manufacturers to market to clients this year, but many are also having to actively turn business away or schedule it for months down the line.

 

Chip producers like United Microtechnology, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), MediaTek, and Realtek have pushed their manufacturing capabilities to the limit to meet production requirements. Despite this, their production capacity is fully booked through the second and third quarters of 2021.

For manufacturers higher up in the supply chain, this is good news. TSMC’s share prices have risen by 50% in 2020 alone; United Microtechnology’s value has more than doubled. While they are working on expanding their capacity, the current demand for new devices and their associated components is likely to continue exceeding supply for the rest of the calendar year.  However, for people and businesses that need these delayed devices, the shortage is more serious.

What Does the Component Shortage Mean for You?

Component and computer shortages affect many more parties than simply the manufacturers. Consumers and businesses at the end of the supply chain see effects as well when it is so difficult to get new machines produced. The problem is that none of these components are used in isolation. The microchips, LCD components, touchscreen elements, and even glass for screens are all utilized in a wide variety of technology, including things that your business may use. Indeed, as demand for phones increases, it becomes harder to source chips for all devices. The result is that it’s simply harder and more expensive to get any type of computing technology. From phones to laptops to desktops, the chip shortage makes it more challenging to find the technology you may need.

IT products like desktop PCs are slightly less impacted by the current shortages than many other products. In general, people who made the switch to working from home have been more likely to purchase a laptop instead of a desktop. Even so, desktop machines are still being affected by shortages and long wait times. In addition, the increased demand for gaming PCs is keeping
manufacturers busy producing high-end machines instead of office workhorses. Laptops, notebooks, phones, and tablets are even more heavily impacted. The increased demand for homeschooling solutions has put intense pressure on portable and kid-friendly technologies.

When this pressure is combined with the need for functional work laptops, it entails that mobile devices and LCD panels may be facing delivery times as long as three months. It is possible to obtain devices on a shorter timeline, but at present, it appears that end-users like businesses will pay the price. Early estimates suggest that PC prices might rise by as much as 30% in 2021 to account for the shortages. When all these delays and shortages are combined, it spells a clear message: this is not the time to upgrade your hardware. Instead, focus on improving and securing the hardware you already have.

Work with tech support to make the most out of existing hardware

Working with a qualified IT support team can help you make the most of the hardware that you have while you wait for the end of recent price hikes and delays. Reach out to the expert team at BKS Systems to learn more about how to keep your current IT systems running smoothly for the foreseeable future. Contact the pros at BKS, we have 20 years of experience in IT service.

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